University of Aberdeen – workshop invitation

abnunilogoWorkshop invitation: The value of the marine environment to divers and sea anglers

We would like to invite you to take part in at least one of the two workshops that we are running in Aberdeen. These will be held on Wednesday 27th and Thursday 28th February, at Aberdeen Arts Centre (33 King Street, Aberdeen AB24 5AA), from 6-9 pm.

A buffet meal and refreshments will be provided and we will reimburse reasonable travel costs (by car or standard class public transport), as well as providing a cash incentive for your contribution – £20 for attending a workshop. We would be grateful if you can let us know if you are able to attend.

The main aim of the workshops is to understand in more detail the benefits that the UK marine environment provides and the values that you place on it. Your responses will provide important information to decision-makers on how divers/anglers value their environment and how they make trade-offs between different things that they value. The workshop and survey outputs will help inform decisions about the establishment of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) in the UK, as well as providing the British Sub-Aqua Club (BSAC), the Angling Trust (AT) and Marine Conservation Society (MCS) with baseline information on the importance of UK marine environments to their members so that they can better represent your values. The results will also be used in the UK National Ecosystem Assessment (NEA), which is a national research programme to better understand the importance of nature to people. You will be able to receive a copy of the final report by email.

The workshops will revolve around your input and sharing ideas with other divers and anglers – we will not be lecturing! Each workshop will involve:

  • An introduction to the project and the proposals for marine protected areas
  • An exercise to understand and share your personal values relating to the marine environment
  • Opportunities to discuss with other divers and anglers what aspects of the different types of UK seas and coastlines are most important to you
  • Discussion of the various benefits that these different settings provide to understand the choices and trade-offs you make when valuing them
  • Evaluating how effective you feel the different methods used in the two workshops are at representing your values and views

The results of our online Marine Values survey have been extremely interesting in giving a broad outline of the individual values of divers and anglers. The workshops will provide us with more in-depth knowledge, and will also allow us to look at shared values between the sea-angling and diving communities. A report on the findings will be available in late March on our project website: The report incorporating online survey and workshop information will be available as part of the UK National Ecosystem Assessment report, which will be published in early 2014.

While we are working with BSAC, AT and MCS to make this work as relevant as possible, our research is independent and the University of Aberdeen does not have a position on the introduction of MPAs. Conclusions drawn from the data gathered in the workshops will not be influenced or moderated by anyone apart from the University researchers involved, and individual data gathered will be used anonymously and will not be shared with anyone else.

We would be delighted to see you at one or even both Aberdeen workshops. Please respond as soon as possible to reserve a place UK NEA project office (

Yours sincerely,

Althea Davies & Rosie McDonald

University of Aberdeen

Category: Consultations, other

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